Oddities

Well, not all of them are odd, but certainly there were some on a recent walk.

split tree trunk

This was the first one. Why had someone chiseled 3 holes into this tree trunk? It was done by humans, not animals; I know pileated woodpeckers peck rectangular holes, but they aren’t quite as rectangular and smooth-sided as this. And it looked like it was a few years old, and dug in rather than being a simple blaze.

But here’s the other thing—the tree originally caught my eye because it was so obviously 2 trees nestled together; the trunks stood out because they were differently coloured.

top of treetrunk that's not split

Except they weren’t. Higher up, they were clearly joined, and in fact the split doesn’t go through to the other side of the tree.

old burned out stump

This burned out stump wasn’t an oddity, particularly, but the hole was like an eye to the rest of the forest.

tree stump hanging in air

Another oddity. When trees fall over I’m not used to seeing the end with the roots suspended fifteen feet up. (It had fallen into the space between two other trees and jammed fairly high off the ground, and the weight of the crown had pulled the root ball into the air.)

mushrooms on treetrunk

And this isn’t an oddity at all, just some nice fungus.

details of underside of mushrooms

And a detail, because I can.

Today I walked a new trail.

dog on very overgrown trail

This, however, is not it. This is an old trail that I walked first. It’s, erm, a little overgrown at the moment.

DSC_0018-cardhu-on-overgrown-trail

Does Our Dog care about that, though? Nah!

dog foot in moss

Gratuitous photo of Our Dog’s foot in moss, just because both are so pretty.

trail through moss

And okay, here’s a picture of part of the new (to me) trail. It’s a pretty one.

Foggy

forest trail in fog 1
Setting out. A bit damp, but awfully pretty.

“Where shall we go this foggy morning?” I thought. Well. Where better than a forest?

forest trail in fog 2

forest trail in fog 4

forest trail in fog 3
Looking up—layers and layers
forest trail in fog 4
Dramatic!
Dog on log in fog.  —I'm sorry, I couldn't help myself.
Dog on log in fog. (I’m sorry, I couldn’t help myself.)

Explored a new trail today

salal and alders
This is the trail. Yes, this. Right in front of me.

An awfully pretty trail. It’s considerably better than a deer trail, having been made by single-track mountain bikers, despite what the above photo looks like. There are not many places where it’s confusing about what is trail and what is not.

It was also much brighter in there than these pictures show, but I didn’t want to flatten out the intensity of colours and contrasts by lightening them too much.

I was thankful to reach the connection to trails I know well before it started getting dark, though.

salal and alders with sun peeking through them
This, on the other hand, is not trail. Even though it looks like it should be.

 

A glow of light

light patch on end of alder log

I spotted this patch of light on the end of a fallen tree that had been cut back so it wouldn’t block the trail. It just glowed there in the shadows. Quite amazing.

Today’s forest

forest path

Overcast, but not raining—but there had been rain during the night. Now that the rains have started up everything is starting to look so GREEN.

moss on tree and log

moss on log

Forest ghosts

Indian pipe pushing up through forest floor debris

I spotted patches of white lumps while on a walk a few days ago, and today took my camera on a return trip. They’re pushing up through moss and debris on the forest floor. They almost look like bones, they’re so smooth and white—perhaps a very small boneyard?

Indian pipe

Or perhaps Indian Pipe (Monotropa uniflora). It lacks chlorophyll—hence the dramatic white colour—and gets its food by parasitizing mycorrhizal fungi in the forest floor.

I’ve seen it before, but never so much of it and never such dense patches. I’ll have to come back again and see how it develops.

Snow without destruction

snow on everything around pond

Thought I should post some pictures of less catastrophic things so that it’s clear it wasn’t all doom and gloom.

duck track on pond
Those would be duck tracks. It was just like watching wee icebreakers.
snow on snake fence
Snow on snake fencing is always pretty.
snowy trees framed by roof edge with snow hanging off it
Snow hanging from a roof can be pretty too, if a little more immediately threatening.
house surrounded by tall, snow-covered trees
This is why we were a little twitchy on Monday.

 

 

Old wood

closeup of bits of wood on an old rootball

It’s been a little hectic, so I haven’t been posting as many photos as usual. But today I found an old root ball with some interesting bits.

the same bits but showing more

Looks to me like the smaller bit of wood is in an animated conversation with the rather bored larger bit.

More doors

door and window in stump
Evidently a high-end residence

Last year in the winter I noticed a door in a stump. This year I noticed two more along the same trail—were they there last year? I don’t think so. Evidently someone is colonizing these woods.

door in stump
This one was a lot better camoflaged!

Ferns

curling fronds on ferns in dim forest light

I do like the way old ferns start to curl. And I was very pleased when I saw the abstract effect of those curls in these photos.

more curling fern fronds

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